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State briefs for April 24

Nonprofit says state education data is incomplete

HONOLULU — An education organization is seeking financial data on public schools but said data made public by the state is incomplete.

The Education Institute of Hawaii came up short in its efforts to collect all the budget data it wants from the state Department of Education.

There is up to $1 billion in unaccounted spending within revenue and expenditure data, the nonprofit institute said.

A 2017 financial audit shows expenditures of $2.8 billion, while the department provided data showing $1.8 billion in expenditures, the institute said.

The discrepancy covers spending by state agencies that are not part of the department’s financial management system, said Lindsay Chambers, education department communications director.

That spending includes fringe benefits paid centrally by the state, such as pensions, health insurance for employees and retirees.

It also includes the budget of the statewide public library system as well as the charter school system, which are separate from the department.

The institute wants to capture all public school financial data to format the information into an online tool that reveals how education dollars are spent.

The education department said it turned over numerous data files in response to requests from the institute, including electronic budget data, details of actual revenues and expenditures, financial audits and weighted student formula funding.

The department complied with multiple requests from the institute under the state’s public records law, but some information remains confidential, Chambers said.

School robotics team wins rookie award at Texas event

WAILUKU, Maui — A Molokai high school was honored with an award in its first appearance at an international robotics competition.

The Molokai High School robotics team won the Hopper-Turing Division Rookie Inspiration Award at the FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Robotics Championship in Houston.

Molokai’s seven-member “Team 7724” was invited, but did not plan to attend because of the cost. Registration for the world championship was $5,000 and travel and lodging costs can run $15,000-$20,000 per team.

The team received unexpected financial support from the community and a fellow robotics team at ‘Iolani School in Honolulu, which donated a $5,000 NASA grant and started a GoFundMe page for Molokai that raised $13,075.

The Houston tournament featured 400 teams.

After going 1-5 in the first matches, the Molokai team recovered and won four in a row with the help of alliances with other teams.

Hawaiian Holdings: 1Q Earnings Snapshot

HONOLULU — Hawaiian Holdings Inc. on Tuesday reported first-quarter profit of $36.4 million.

The Honolulu-based company said it had net income of 75 cents per share. Earnings, adjusted for non-recurring gains, came to 67 cents per share.

The results exceeded Wall Street expectations. The average estimate of six analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research was for earnings of 66 cents per share.

The parent company of Hawaiian Airlines posted revenue of $656.8 million in the period, which did not meet forecasts. Three analysts surveyed by Zacks expected $660.3 million.

Hawaiian Holdings shares increased 15 percent since the beginning of the year. In the final minutes of trading Tuesday, shares hit $30.44, a decrease of 23 percent in the past 12 months.
Source: Hawaii Tribune Herald

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